De-coppering after treatment

Erich Magee

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Hi,

I had multiple fish in my DT with ich, so I had to copper the the entire tank. Everything has been looking good for over 30 days and I'm in the process of de-coppering. It's a 125 and I can only change 40 gallons at a time. I've done this twice with new carbon and Cuprisorb and using a Hanna tester I'm getting readings of 0.08. I have seen some posts suggesting that Hanna tests can be off by 0.05. So here's my question:

Is it safe to begin restocking invertabrates at 0.08?
 

MnFish1

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Hi,

I had multiple fish in my DT with ich, so I had to copper the the entire tank. Everything has been looking good for over 30 days and I'm in the process of de-coppering. It's a 125 and I can only change 40 gallons at a time. I've done this twice with new carbon and Cuprisorb and using a Hanna tester I'm getting readings of 0.08. I have seen some posts suggesting that Hanna tests can be off by 0.05. So here's my question:

Is it safe to begin restocking invertabrates at 0.08?
No. I wouldn't. However, you could buy another test and see the reading. Besides that, you need to keep your invertebrates 'fallow' i.e. without fish for 60-76 days. So you still have a month to go, and monitor the copper. I.e. ich could be attached/with or on your invertebrates or their rock. you have to give The ICH a chance to die off
 
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MnFish1

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Secondly, copper can continue to leach out of rock, etc for a fair bit of time - and I would doubt that a 40 gallon change, at 2.5 ppm would drop within a couple days. The leaching process can take a couple weeks or more depending on the amount of cuprisorb you're using
 
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Erich Magee

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So to be clear, I have no inverts or rock currently in the tank. Just some place holder rock for fish to have some cover. I guess what I'm really asking is if testers are +/- .05 will I ever get a 0.00 reading?
 
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MnFish1

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So to be clear, I have no inverts or rock currently in the tank. Just some place holder rock for fish to have some cover. I guess what I'm really asking is if testers are +/- .05 will I ever get a 0.00 reading?
Sorry, you didn't clear it up:) completely - but I think you're trying to say - right now, all you have is fish in a tank with a Little Rock - you do not have invertebrates separated in another tanK that you want to put in.

Yes - testers that are +/- .05 can have zero readings. Your tank has a 0.08 reading - which means 0.03 - 0.13. So - it's still too high. When it reads 0.05 - it means the reading could be 0.0 or 0.10. Still too high. This is the problem with using copper in a display tank. Especially when, assuming invertebrates are going to be climing/sitting on rocks that may have adsorbed copper, the local copper concentration may be much higher than recommended. Thus - it can take weeks for copper to dissipate enough to add inverts. Hope this helps.

I meant to ask are you using the hanna upper range or lower range copper test
the low range copper test is for fresh water. the high range is for either. The accuracy of the high range copper test is :
Accuracy @ 25°C/77°F± 0.05 ppm ±5% of reading
 
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threebuoys

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Which copper product did you use? Keep in mind, the target fish dose for cupramine is 0.5 while the dose for CopperPower/CopperSafe is 2.50. So, 0.08 = 16% of the cupramine dose but only 3% of the CopperPower dose.

I don't know where the safety threshold is for invertebrates for either product.
 
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vetteguy53081

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Hi,

I had multiple fish in my DT with ich, so I had to copper the the entire tank. Everything has been looking good for over 30 days and I'm in the process of de-coppering. It's a 125 and I can only change 40 gallons at a time. I've done this twice with new carbon and Cuprisorb and using a Hanna tester I'm getting readings of 0.08. I have seen some posts suggesting that Hanna tests can be off by 0.05. So here's my question:

Is it safe to begin restocking invertabrates at 0.08?
Agree as there are risks when adding copper to a display and even the lowest can be fatal hence the advantage of separate treatment tank(s)
While cuprisorb works well, there is no assurance of 100% removal. When you get that reading well below the current, you can add a test snail such as cerith and see how it does for 6-7 days before taking a chance on more
 
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Jay Hemdal

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Hi,

I had multiple fish in my DT with ich, so I had to copper the the entire tank. Everything has been looking good for over 30 days and I'm in the process of de-coppering. It's a 125 and I can only change 40 gallons at a time. I've done this twice with new carbon and Cuprisorb and using a Hanna tester I'm getting readings of 0.08. I have seen some posts suggesting that Hanna tests can be off by 0.05. So here's my question:

Is it safe to begin restocking invertabrates at 0.08?

What type of copper did you use?
Do you have the Hanna high or low range tester?

The Hanna test has two variables; resolution and accuracy. These can work together or cancel each other out, no way to tell which way it will go.

For ionic copper, you need to get below 0.005 ppm. Chelated copper would be higher…..but 0.08 is too high.

Theoretically, you’ve only changed 2/3 of the water, so for sure you need to do one more change. The confounding factor is that each time you do a water change, you are changing some of the fresh water you just changed, reducing the effectiveness of the change.

Jay
 
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MnFish1

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What type of copper did you use?
Do you have the Hanna high or low range tester?

The Hanna test has two variables; resolution and accuracy. These can work together or cancel each other out, no way to tell which way it will go.

For ionic copper, you need to get below 0.005 ppm. Chelated copper would be higher…..but 0.08 is too high.

Theoretically, you’ve only changed 2/3 of the water, so for sure you need to do one more change. The confounding factor is that each time you do a water change, you are changing some of the fresh water you just changed, reducing the effectiveness of the change.

Jay
Hamza has a calculator that lets you add the level of a substance to a field, the desired result - and it can help decide how many water changes to do. One can also enter the amount of the substance that is being produced.

"Copper can be introduced into the aquarium via tap water, trace element solutions and fish food. Some products contain higher amounts of copper to achieve a brightening of the corals. Copper readings as low as 10 µg/l (0,26 US.liq.gal.) can be considered uncritical, as most copper is present in the aquarium as a non-bioavailable compound."

Note (unless I've made a math error - 10 micrograms/liter = 0.01 ppm - so you are a ways off a 'safe level' - and the key point - the concentration on the rock might be 10x higher.

I might suggest that you do a test - check the copper lets say today - than again in 3 days - it will tell you if the level is dropping or staying the same - (of course within the error of the test. That will give you at least the estimate of how fast copper is being produced in your tank - as it's released from your rock.

Edit - additionally another wrinkle is that sometimes copper can be stored as a more non-toxic chemical. Bottom line - I think you're at least 4 weeks from adding more inverts. you have to document that without doing anything - your copper level is not going to go up again. PPS - I don't remember if you used activated carbon - but this will also remove some coppers
 
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Erich Magee

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What type of copper did you use?
Do you have the Hanna high or low range tester?

The Hanna test has two variables; resolution and accuracy. These can work together or cancel each other out, no way to tell which way it will go.

For ionic copper, you need to get below 0.005 ppm. Chelated copper would be higher…..but 0.08 is too high.

Theoretically, you’ve only changed 2/3 of the water, so for sure you need to do one more change. The confounding factor is that each time you do a water change, you are changing some of the fresh water you just changed, reducing the effectiveness of the change.

Jay

I used Coppersafe so chelated. I wish I had more RODI capacity but 40 gal at a time is all I can store. So yeah, each water change has diminishing returns but the reading has dropped by half each change.

I’m using the Hanna high tester. Takes a couple of days to generate the RODI so I will change again soon and retest.

The other odd thing is I have had a bag of Cuprisorb in the sump for several days and it has not darkened at all.
 
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